Moving from despair to praise

“and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.”
Isaiah 61:3 NIV

Dear Minster and Friends,

God has always turned hearts and souls around, and heaven knows how we need this. A sign of the Kingdom of God active within the world is in this turning around. Grief, mourning and despair are all mentioned here in Isaiah 61 as the backdrop  and illustrate the need for God in our lives. The anointing of the Spirit and the ministry of Jesus turns groans and unspoken sighs of despair into songs of praise. It is mysterious, miraculous and so desperately needed in our times.

The hymn writers of the past , and the great songwriters of the present are deeply aware and unimaginably grateful for this work of the Spirit in the human heart. Two hymns I have pictured here are by Isaac Watts, a hymn writer and poet of the 1700s who invented the hymn in the English language and gave to Christians the words they needed to track and trace these moments and experiences of transition.

“O God our help in ages past,
our hope of years to come,
our shelter from the stormy blast,
and our eternal home.”

“Awake, our souls, away our fears,
let every trembling thought be gone;
Awake, and run the heavenly race,
and put a cheerful courage on”

If you ever experience despair, mourning or grief – either in a short moment or a lingering low-level of melancholy – or if this is the winter season of your soul right now, may I encourage you with this invitation to worship, to find the songs and hymns that will guide your heart and inner being. Perhaps even these two hymns by a great poet of the past could minister to you as you seek joy and to have a ‘garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair’.

With much love,


News & Events

Frog mentioned briefly last Sunday about the violence that erupted in Jos and the response from the congregation was ‘what can we do to help?’
Click here for a video of Hassan talking about the current situation in Jos and how we can help.
We have worked out the rough costs for each of the items needed and have found;

A new generator would cost between £850 – £1000
Repair of the tent would cost roughly £200
A football kit for one team would cost roughly £75 – £100 (we are looking hopefully providing 5 teams in total with a new kit)
Worship equipment – this would be as much as possible needed and any excess of donations will go towards worship equipment.

If you’d like to donate money to Hassan and Trinity Minster then please use our bank details with the reference ‘Trinity Minster‘ Account Number: 33007162 Sort Code: 20-45-45

Many thanks from Hassan John, our partner in Jos, Nigeria. A new patch for the burned tent has been ordered and will be able to repair the tent within a couple of weeks.

31st October – Light Party
6pm – 7:30pm

We will be holding our very own Light Party!
The idea of a light party is to offer children an alternative to halloween and a way for us to teach children that Jesus is the light of the world. We’ll be having party food, games, crafts and lots of fun together.
Please book you tickets here by 21st October so we know how many children to cater for.

3rd November – Bonfire Celebration
4pm – 6:30pm

Remember, remember the 3rd of November!
Join us for hot dogs, hot chocolate, sparklers, a bonfire and of course fireworks!
All are welcome to this free event.

Women’s Gathering Afternoon Tea 
If anyone has any cake stands they would be happy for the women’s gathering to use for their afternoon tea on 24th November then please email